I’m constantly conflicted with these overbearing ideas that I should be working hard for the sake of my future, but also having fun whilst I’m young.
I agree that I want and should do things now so that I can live the life I want, but the pressures are all rather conflicting and confusing — I’m still just trying to find my feet as an adult and I don’t really know what I fully want…
This last year I’ve faced a lot of job rejection and have found myself carving my own path and gathering experience, as and where I can, whilst working a part time job*
*Quick mini life update: I’m now leaving the supermarket for a little bakery as the hours suit me better for a part time job on the side of my freelance writing.
There’s a weird expectation for people in their 20’s to instantly land your ‘career’ job, even though you might literally be fresh out of uni with no idea what you want to do… and yet you’re still supposed to be getting promotions and raking in the dollar. Ultimately this is so that one day I might be able to pull the funds together for a deposit on a house, because “if you don’t start saving now it’s practically impossible” says almost everyone. Infact, in a poll I conducted on Instagram, 98% of people felt pressured to start saving for a house in their 20’s.
But then, my ideal career might not even make that much money, so then there’s this pressure to go where the money is, to secure said house, rather than a job I’d enjoy… meanwhile I’m not even ready to fully move out of my parents house. I’m 22, with just enough savings to almost get myself a rust bucket of a car, I’m not even ready to be thinking about a deposit… so why is this pressure still looming over me?
67% of voters said that they felt pressured to take a higher paid job rather than a job in a career they want just because it pays more. And, 92% also felt the pressure to land their dream career job in their 20’s.
I should be really happy that I’m privileged to be in the position to have a little part time job to keep me afloat while I crack on building myself as a freelance writer and working out what I want to do and where I want to go.
But it’s not even just the working grind that hovers over us in our 20’s… 89% of voters in my poll agreed that there’s this idea to have fun while we are young and instead spend our savings on travelling around the world and making amazing memories.
AND, it’s weird that both don’t go hand in hand. You need the high paying job to afford to do this, but also the lack of job to have the freedom to disappear for a few months. Unsurprisingly, 93% of voters also found this idea of pursuing your career and making money for the future, and living life to the full while you’re young, conflicting.
Now might also be the time to mention that as a female I’m also reminded to do these fun things now before I have children (yes it is assumed that as I’m a woman I must have children in my future -_-).
These societal pressures and expectations make me wonder; why did I always idealise being in my 20’s?
When I was a kid I thought getting my dream job would be easy, and that I could take time off as and when I pleased and see my friends all the time and travel the world whilst progressing at work and being financially comfortable.
I don’t want to say well this is just life because life is hard and being an adult is hard… but it kinda just is that.
However, I’m learning to ignore these pressures from anyone outside of me, myself, and I because well it is my life. If I do want to travel, I will. If I want to give a stronger stab at freelance writing rather than taking a fulltime higher paid job that I wont enjoy, I will.
Obviously I will be sensible with money, but I’m 22 and not in any physical or mental position to be wanting to immediately be putting a deposit on a house in a location unknown so there is no point dedicating my hard work towards saving for it now.
I’m not sure if it is because I’m a planner that I’m getting myself worried about plans far to far ahead, or if there really is this societal pressure to do all these things. In the last few months I have been told to blow my money and go travelling, but I’ve also been told to save for the future, I’ve also been told to take the job with more money over continuing my journey as a freelance writer, and I’ve also been told to do things before I have children when I don’t even know if I want them because I’m only 22!
I don’t have a life plan, right now I’ve got a little work situation that works, and I’ve got enough spare time to socialise and enjoy time with my family and friends. For the meantime that works.
Can societal pressures stop telling me I’m not doing it right because there is no right way; A) because they are conflicting, and B) because it’s my life! I’m just heading in a direction that I think is right for me.
Like a wonderful friend of mine once said;
It’s like your a golf ball, you’re just aiming to get on the green, you don’t need a hole in oneEmily Dickens
Me, myself, and I, are just gonna take things day by day and just see what happens in my 20’s whilst I aim for that golf green.